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Distal Fibula Stress Fracture

An MRI showed that I incurred a stress fracture in my ankle as a result of severe osteopenia, almost 4 months ago. Treatment consisted of a period of rest for 2 weeks, then wearing a boot for a month. I was then put on complete rest of the injured foot-no weight-bearing at all for over 2 months, as x-rays showed it was healing quite slowly. During that time I used crutches and then a knee scooter (having had too many mishaps, necessitating stepping down on my injured foot to catch myself from falling). The next x-ray, 2 weeks ago showed a "healing stress fracture", but my doctor told me that by his examination the ankle was healed and I could start putting weight on it and get off the crutches as I felt able. 10 days later I was still using one crutch, as my ankle was still quite painful. Upon another examination of my ankle the doctor re-confirmed his findings that the ankle was healed and that there was no reason I couldn't put full weight-bearing use on it, but I could use a cane if I really needed it. I have been doing the rehab exercises I was given at physical therapy, regularly and have been following the doctor's instructions for 6 days now, and my ankle is again quite painful, has now swelled up so much that I can barely wear my shoe, and find it difficult to walk on it without assistance from my cane. The ankle bone is not even visible now and it is swollen on both sides. (It has been painful on both sides from the beginning, and my doctor is aware of that). Is this a normal part of the healing process and if so, how long can I expect this pain and swelling to last? Is there anything else I can do to rehabilitate it faster? Thank you.
2 Responses
1711789 tn?1361311607
MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL
Hi there!

Well, without a clinical evaluation it would be difficult to comment on the situation. Though slight initial discomfort may be fairly acceptable after a period of non-weight bearing, pain and swelling after 4 months of injury is not considered normal. I would suggest considering a re-evaluation by your treating doctor/ second opinion to consider secondary issues and for appropriate management.
Hope this helps.

Take care!
Avatar universal
Thank you Dr. Kaul for taking the time to comment on my ankle. I am pleased to report that my ankle is finally much improved, even though still a bit swollen; but I can put full weight on it for much longer periods of time now...that is until two recent falls-on sidewalks. : (   I am, needless to say, quite frustrated, as I now have two sore ankles, though not terribly painful or swollen, thank the Lord!

I appreciate your expert advice and will definitely keep it in mind should I develop further problems. Thank you again.
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